The Matador

January 27th, 2006


The Matador

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Still of Greg Kinnear in The MatadorStill of Pierce Brosnan and Greg Kinnear in The MatadorPierce Brosnan at event of The MatadorStill of Pierce Brosnan in The MatadorStill of Philip Baker Hall in The MatadorStill of Philip Baker Hall in The Matador

A globetrotting hitman and a crestfallen businessman meet in a hotel bar in Mexico City in an encounter that draws them together in a way neither expected.

Release Year: 2005

Rating: 6.9/10 (29,319 voted)

Critic's Score: 65/100

Director: Richard Shepard

Stars: Pierce Brosnan, Greg Kinnear, Hope Davis

A chance encounter between a travelling salesman and a lonely hitman triggers a strangely profound relationship which provokes each to act in ways neither would have imagined possible. Fate steps in to form a friendship between two men from irreconcilable worlds that will alter the lives of both forever.

Pierce Brosnan - Julian Noble
Arlin Miller - Radio DJ (voice)
Azucena Medina - Young Denver Fling
Jonah Meyerson - Ten Year Old Boy
Wiveca Bonerais - Ten Year Old Boy's Mother
Greg Kinnear - Danny Wright
Hope Davis - Carolyn 'Bean' Wright
Adam Scott - Phil Garrison
Portia Dawson - Genevive
Roberto Sosa - Skinny Mexican Man
Antonio Zavala Kugler - Hotel Bartender 1
Ramon Alvarez - Shooting Stand Owner
Luz Maria Molina - School Girl
Philip Baker Hall - Mr. Randy
Carolyn Horwitz - Cantina Turista #1

Taglines: A hitman and a salesman walk into a bar...


Official Website: Miramax [United States] | Official site [Russia] |

Release Date: 27 January 2006

Filming Locations: Centro Histórico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico

Box Office Details

Budget: $10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: $92,312 (USA) (1 January 2006) (4 Screens)

Gross: $17,297,244 (Worldwide) (6 October 2006)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

Hope Davis was pregnant during the filming of the movie.

Revealing mistakes: When Julian and Danny get out of the rental car in the middle of the night, in the middle of winter, you can't see their "breath". The scene was obviously shot during warmer weather, using fake snow.

Danny Wright: [after just learning Julian lied about having a wife] I mean, what else is a lie?
Bean: Are you even an assassin?

User Review

"Brosnan, Pierce Brosnan," is not all you think...Matador is KILLER Comedy!!


A Note: I think it's best if go to the theater thinking, "Pierce Brosnan = James Bond." This is what I was expecting. Normally, I will have seen the trailer before going to a film. In this instance, I saw an advance screening as a part of the Austin Film Festival and had only seen a promotional photo of Brosnan walking away from an exploding car. This reinforced the stereotype I had for Brosnan. I think the distributor of this film would have been wise to promote it in this manner, feeding people's stereotypes by using this James Bond-esquire image, for I think the effectiveness of the comedy may in large measure be a reaction to what a drastic departure it is for Brosnan. And this was, no doubt, his intention.

Plot Summary: The story is about hit man Julian Noble. Noble, on assignment in Mexico City, has somewhat of a meltdown when he realizes his nomadic existence has left him with no one -- no friends or family, not even a place to call home. Desperate for companionship, he starts up conversation with Danny Wright, a normal guy, with a normal life, in town on business. Unaccustomed to normal social etiquette he scares Wright off, but pleads for forgiveness the next day and requests that he accompany him to a bull fight. And the comedy begins as Julian decides to open up to his new friend more about what he does for a living. All is well until Julian realizes his "meltdown" is serious and he is having difficulty following through on his "assignments." He therefore has to ask for help from his new friend Danny.

Analysis: Brosnan took a substantial risk in signing on to this picture. Paying him less than he would normally receive, and requiring that he sport a creepy 'stache, a pot belly and trade in his custom- tailored Armani suits for tight-fitting-euro-pimp threads, you would think he would be out of his element. It turns out to be quite the contrary. Brosnan proves that he is more than James Bond or Thomas Crowne. He proves that he can be one of the most entertaining comedic actors working right now as well. The dynamic between Kinnear and Brosnan is delectable. Kinnear plays such a likable straight man cum everyman, and Brosnan plays such a likable hit man, and the combination of the two is irresistible. Their rapport with each other is so ripe for comedy that you want it in every scene.

While the film uses many conventional cinematic devices, I couldn't help but feel as if I was watching something very fresh and original. Largely, I can attribute this to the performance of Brosnan, but it was also interesting that the film maintained the feel of a fast passed action movie, in keeping with Brosnan's most notable genre.

I highly recommend this film.


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